Diagnosis of Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis: A Case-Based Approach

Sahajal Dhooria; Ritesh Agarwal


Future Microbiol. 2014;9(10):1195-1208. 

In This Article

Do Sputum Cultures for A. fumigatus Have Any Significance in Diagnosing ABPA?

Growth of A. fumigatus in respiratory secretions is not diagnostic of ABPA because the fungus can also be cultured in other pulmonary diseases due to its ubiquitous nature.[78] Sputum cultures may grow A. fumigatus in 40–60% of ABPA patients.[4,17,77] A better technique for sputum processing employing separation of sputum plugs from saliva before inoculation may increase the yield of cultures.[79] Interestingly, the vast majority of ABPA patients have detectable A. fumigatus DNA in their sputum despite negative cultures, attesting to its definite presence in the lung.[80] The role of culture (if an isolate can be obtained) mainly lies in susceptibility testing and/or real-time molecular testing for resistance to antifungal agents.[80]